Schubert: The Hyperion Schubert Edition, Vol. 18 – Peter Schreier
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The 'horn call' accompanying motif is heard in A flat in the right hand during the first full bar and reappears in the relative minor, in the left hand, immediately afterwards. This canonic effect continues throughout the song, the bass clef answering and echoing the statements of the treble. The inspiration for this seems to have been that the song has a cast of more than one character: the night does not disturb us, the poet says. Just as in Das Finden Schubert places music in the treble clef to suggest femininity, the different tessituras of the piano writing here suggest the echoes of personal sympathy and a dialogue of the sexes. Reed states that this Uz poem has nothing in common with the Mayrhofer Abschied, but surely it is reciprocity, the sharing of intimacy and exchange of feelings which probably drew the subject matter of the two poems together (and thus their musical depiction) in the composer's mind. There is also something solemn and dignified about a ceremony of farewell, and the advent of night has a similar majestic portent. The repetition of the line 'dass er unsern Wein erfrischte' is a marvellous touch: the first setting of the words emphasises 'unsern' and the 'erfrische' falls on the strong first beat. In the repeat of the line the emphases fall in different places (the line has effectively been re-barred) and the effect is of a colloquy where one person repeats another's statement in a slightly different voice. The effective and haunting elongation of the second syllable of the word 'erfrische' ('verborgen' in the second verse) takes its cue from the feminine cadence implicit in the rhythm of the poem itself. By 1816 Schubert was becoming increasingly masterful in handling subtleties of prosody.
from notes by Graham Johnson © 1993